A Severe Health Crisis:
There are 66,000 pregnant women living at the relief camps in Pakistan and many of them are likely to give birth in the next three months, the UN has said. Displaced children need special health and nutrition assistance as well as access to primary and emergency medical care to prevent disease. With the dire conditions, these people are living in there is a serious threat of an epidemic spreading in the camps.
Termed as the worst humanitarian crisis that Pakistan has experienced. UNHCR reports that there are 2.2 million people displaced. Conditions for the conflict areas are a cause of concern since access to water, electricity and health care is extremely limited. Fighting and a general lack of security have disrupted supply chains in Dir, Buner and Swat, making goods – food in particular – scarce and expensive. In addition, frequent curfews make it difficult for people to obtain whatever basic services do happen to be available in their towns and villages. In Mingora, for example, the Swat district’s main hospital is now abandoned and water and electricity have been cut off for over a week.
Large camps are being set up to house civilians fleeing conflict-stricken areas. According to official statistics, however, only a fraction of the 2.2. Million officially registered internally displaced people (IDPs) have moved into them.
We urgently require doctors, community health workers, gynecologists and nurses to go up to the areas. We, a group of citizens working with Concern for Children (organization tied with GSK) have arranged accommodation and are arranging for travel expenses for anyone who would like to go to these areas.
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We are working in conjunction with Sungi and Omar Asghar Khan Development Foundation to provide emergency medical care to those IDP’s that have not been able to reach the government camps. These people are living with host families who are themselves impoverished, or have been placed in make shift shelters in schools.
The organisations on the ground have informed us that the need for female doctors, especially gynecologists is dire and many women in the make shift shelters are likely to give birth in unhygienic surroundings, far from medical care. We will be taking up missions of female doctors, medicines and safe delivery kits to those that need it the most